Discuss Detroit Archives - January 2008 Better Made Potato Chips Previous Next
Archive through February 06, 2008Gazhekwe30102-06-084:54pm
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Angry_dad
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Username: Angry_dad

Post Number: 168
Registered: 02-2006
Posted on Wednesday, February 06, 2008 - 5:16 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The chip makers may be gone but the salsa makers in the area may have made up for them.

I dare say that everybody here at some time or anither has tried Garden Fresh salsa and chips. Along with that, Downey's chips are still out here on the north side.

But what happened to Superior?
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Gazhekwe
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Username: Gazhekwe

Post Number: 1394
Registered: 08-2007
Posted on Wednesday, February 06, 2008 - 5:55 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

More history, and boy, do I want some potato chips right now!

1953 - Paradise Potato Chip Co. buys Superior Potato Chips and changes its name to Superior.

1954 - Superior Potato Chip Co. moves to a single location at Berwood St. in Detroit. see 1963

1963 - Superior Potato Chip Co. buys Everkrisp Potato Chip Co.

http://www.chiptin.com/antiqib les/tins/snack_checklist.htm

Interesting! Uncle Ray's is on Birwood.

1984 The Detroit Chamber of Commerce hires Jack Griffo, former president of Superior Potato Chips, to head up the corporate fundraising program.

From http://www.unclerays.com/compa ny.asp:

Uncle Ray started in business in 1965 out of the back seat of his 1961 Dodge Dart. A self made man who never went to college, Ray made and sold chip dips, popcorn and shrimp cocktail sauce to local bars and store in the Detroit area. In the early hours of the morning, Ray would be busy making his concoctions in his small apartment kitchen - and during the day, he would be out on the road selling his product. ...

By 1983, Ray needed more space. He decided to purchase the old Superior Potato Chip factory located at 14245 Birwood, on Detroit 's west side. The 75,000 square foot building made and warehoused potato chips. From 1983 - 1994, Ray produced over 15 flavors of potato chips and may corn products. ...

By 1993, the company began to take on too much debt, Ray decided to retire and sold the business to a large investor.

In 1995, Ray was presented with the opportunity to purchase back the business. Eagar to get out of retirement, Ray accepted and started the "Uncle Ray's" Potato Chip line of products. Leaving the Cabana Potato Chips name behind, he began selling the Uncle Ray's line with much acceptance.
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Bigb23
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Username: Bigb23

Post Number: 428
Registered: 11-2007
Posted on Wednesday, February 06, 2008 - 6:53 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

You can find Uncle Ray's at local dollar stores in the area.

Not only can you buy American - you can buy Detroit!
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Gazhekwe
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Username: Gazhekwe

Post Number: 1395
Registered: 08-2007
Posted on Wednesday, February 06, 2008 - 7:08 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

They have lots of flavors, too, I think there is dill pickle, and Ketchup, along with the usual barbecue and others.

Does anyone remember Krun-chee? They used to have those 'Do not eat' packs in the bag. I think they were made by the same people who made Velvet Peanut Butter.
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Bigb23
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Username: Bigb23

Post Number: 429
Registered: 11-2007
Posted on Wednesday, February 06, 2008 - 7:17 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

A quick yecch story.

On a summer visit to my older brother's Navy base on Rhode Island, in 1965, (I was ten), we were at the the beach, when they had a shore side jellyfish invasion.
With my trusty New Era tin, I scooped up as many as I could, and packed them up for show and tell back in Oak Park.
Unknown to my parents, I safely put them in the storage trunk of the 65' Chevy station wagon, with picnic stuff piled on top. We then made our way back to Michigan.

What was that God-awful smell 300 miles later?

It made for many a family story for years to come.
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Bigb23
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Username: Bigb23

Post Number: 430
Registered: 11-2007
Posted on Wednesday, February 06, 2008 - 7:24 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

One thing I would like to forget, is the wax paper bags with the staples.
You always knew when you had the staple in your mouth!

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Jrvass
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Username: Jrvass

Post Number: 460
Registered: 01-2007
Posted on Wednesday, February 06, 2008 - 7:41 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Too funny Bigb!

Sounds like something I would do! (Jellyfish)
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D2dyeah
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Username: D2dyeah

Post Number: 92
Registered: 09-2005
Posted on Wednesday, February 06, 2008 - 8:17 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

As kids in the 50's, my brother and I used to wonder what those small black cellophane bags with the pellets were, inside the Better Made and New Era cans. I guess they were for freshness. My brother ate one, and our mom was screaming "Spit it out..spit it out" We didn't know what was up.
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Bigb23
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Username: Bigb23

Post Number: 437
Registered: 11-2007
Posted on Wednesday, February 06, 2008 - 8:35 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

This is starting to look like a "Jack Handy" moment from "SNL".

Chippy's or others respond please?
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Soomka1
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Username: Soomka1

Post Number: 80
Registered: 02-2007
Posted on Wednesday, February 06, 2008 - 9:00 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I remember in the late 60's after visiting my grandparents on Golburn, my Dad would pull up in front of the Better Made plant on Gratiot. He would come out with a big cardboard box full of hot chips which would keep the kids quiet for the whole drive home. The worst thing about moving to the east side in 1970 was that we didn't drive past the plant anymore.

(Message edited by soomka1 on February 06, 2008)
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Dave70
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Username: Dave70

Post Number: 33
Registered: 08-2007
Posted on Thursday, February 07, 2008 - 4:11 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I smell those chips every time I pass Gratiot on 94, hehe.

Nice pics Polaar, wow brings back memories... If I recall correctly the New Era "Scientifically Processed" chips tin describes the digestive benefit of hydrogenated oil. haha The trans fats!
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Oldestuff
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Username: Oldestuff

Post Number: 67
Registered: 01-2007
Posted on Thursday, February 07, 2008 - 11:32 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I remember that Superior Chips were sold at the Michigan Theater in a green bag, that was mostly
wax paper so it wouldn't make noise during the movie. It was a treat way better than pop corn.
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Billk
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Username: Billk

Post Number: 202
Registered: 09-2005
Posted on Thursday, February 07, 2008 - 2:57 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Does Faygo have a factory store?
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Jman
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Username: Jman

Post Number: 119
Registered: 10-2006
Posted on Thursday, February 07, 2008 - 3:52 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

At the risk of being thrown into a vat of boiling oil, I have always thought that Better Made potato chips tasted no better than salted cardboard. I wouldn't buy Pringles on a bet but even Pringles are better. I have tried all the chips mentioned in this thread and enjoyed them all except BM.
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Livernoisyard
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Username: Livernoisyard

Post Number: 5074
Registered: 10-2004
Posted on Thursday, February 07, 2008 - 4:07 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

quote:

At the risk of being thrown into a vat of boiling oil, I have always thought that Better Made potato chips tasted no better than salted cardboard.

Blasphemy! BM chips are boiled in cottonseed oil--at great expense, according to their marketers.
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Jman
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Username: Jman

Post Number: 123
Registered: 10-2006
Posted on Thursday, February 07, 2008 - 10:13 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Cottonseed oil? Maybe that's the problem.
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Dieseldog
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Username: Dieseldog

Post Number: 2
Registered: 12-2004
Posted on Friday, February 08, 2008 - 12:24 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Back in the 1990s Our repair shop had 5 Better Maid chip distributors and about 15 Melody Farms independent distributors It was always a treat to have both broken down in the shop at the same time

Many a teenage dinner of Melody Farms French Onion dip and Better Maid chips were had. If we were lucky an ice cream truck would be in for service. We had desert (couldn't let the popsicles melt and go to waste)
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Pgn421
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Username: Pgn421

Post Number: 357
Registered: 02-2005
Posted on Friday, February 08, 2008 - 12:37 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Dieseldog- Welcome to the forum,Where was your shop?
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Dieseldog
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Username: Dieseldog

Post Number: 3
Registered: 12-2004
Posted on Friday, February 08, 2008 - 1:33 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The shop is in Redford. Inkster Rd by I-96 Its a small shop for big trucks. I returned to work there in October last year. We still work on milk trucks Baremans and Country Fresh (Melody farms is a thing of the past) but to my dis appointment all of the better maid trucks and routes are company owned. we do not service them. Ryder Commercial Leasing gets all the good chips. Thanx for the welcome pgn!
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871egrandblvd
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Username: 871egrandblvd

Post Number: 1
Registered: 01-2008
Posted on Friday, February 08, 2008 - 6:52 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

My Grandmother ran a Better Made Potato Chip franchise in Hamtramck, on Joseph Campau, until 1969. The site was excavated for a new City Hall. When the Pope visited Hamtramck, he said Mass at the site where her store was.
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Jrvass
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Username: Jrvass

Post Number: 466
Registered: 01-2007
Posted on Friday, February 08, 2008 - 9:16 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Pope Story (no extra charge):

Myself and 2 of my friends were returning from Marquette MI (NMU) to Detroit that weekend. We get to Mackinaw City and the guy that owned the car pumps in 12 gallons of diesel fuel. ("I always buy from the yellow pump"
After I siphon out the diesel and he refills with gasoline, we needed to dump the diesel. So we pitch it in the sewer. Some old woman comes out of her house and says "I saw what you did. I just called the sheriff!"

10 minutes later... we crossed from Emmett to Cheboygan county. As fast as an old Honda Civic could go!
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Oldestuff
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Username: Oldestuff

Post Number: 68
Registered: 01-2007
Posted on Friday, February 08, 2008 - 11:09 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I remember that Superior Chips were sold at the Michigan Theater in a green bag, that was mostly
wax paper so it wouldn't make noise during the movie. It was a treat way better than pop corn.
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East_detroit
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Username: East_detroit

Post Number: 1472
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Friday, February 08, 2008 - 11:16 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I stopped by the Better Made store on Gratiot yesterday. The store is way better than it was before. Displays of old tins and serving dishes, etc... and they have clothing, etc.

I bought a bucket of chips in a cool container and some chocolate covered chips. They threw in a free personal size bag of chips and were really nice.

The chocolate covered chips are really good... and the chips in the bucket are all nice and whole and crispy.
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Steamaker
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Username: Steamaker

Post Number: 55
Registered: 03-2007
Posted on Friday, February 08, 2008 - 1:52 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I just had some Better Made chips with my coney island hot dog and a Vernors
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Jrvass
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Username: Jrvass

Post Number: 468
Registered: 01-2007
Posted on Friday, February 08, 2008 - 4:18 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I'm still tasting my (burp) coney island dogs from lunchtime.

I must be getting too old for "spicey" food.

:-(
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Douglasm
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Username: Douglasm

Post Number: 1012
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, February 08, 2008 - 6:39 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Slightly off topic, but not too much.

Anyone got a photo of the New Era potato chip logo on a silo?
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Paczki
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Username: Paczki

Post Number: 46
Registered: 02-2007
Posted on Friday, February 08, 2008 - 6:58 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

There was a Better Made delivery driver named Peachy who lived on Kirby in the '60's. Anyone in the neighborhood could knock on his door any time of the day or night and buy a fresh bag of chips from him. I never thought of it before but I wonder how much he made off those sales.
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Bigb23
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Username: Bigb23

Post Number: 444
Registered: 11-2007
Posted on Friday, February 08, 2008 - 7:01 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Douglasm -

Glad to add!



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Jgavrile
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Username: Jgavrile

Post Number: 21
Registered: 09-2005
Posted on Friday, February 08, 2008 - 7:30 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Saw that barn out on old Grand River west of Lansing I think. Am I right? Pretty neat. wanted to get a picture of it.
I used to work with the now president of Better Made at Ford Motor Co. Sam Cipriano used to be a fuel systems engineer for Ford. He also had a model A Ford restoration hobby that he turned into a business up on Harper in the 70's Motor City Antique auto supply. I don't think he ever intended to be in the potato chip business. He loved working on old Ford's. He sort of inherited it , when his Dad and Godfather passed away. he is still a very good friend of mine and he does a great job in keeping this old Detroit landmark business going ,in spite of all the competition there is with snacks and chips. he manages to be inovative and come out with new flavors and styles, along with other products. Proud to know him as a friend. Its too bad some of the other old Detroit companies, didn't have the balls to stick it out like Better Made and Faygo.
Maybe, if they did , we would still have our old favorites like Sanders,Strohs,and others.Even Vernors. no longer belongs to Detroit.
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Summertime1
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Username: Summertime1

Post Number: 31
Registered: 01-2008
Posted on Saturday, February 09, 2008 - 2:09 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Polaar, love those containers. I wish i still had the Better Made one. I cant believe no one in my family has a container like that.
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Douglasm
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Username: Douglasm

Post Number: 1013
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Saturday, February 09, 2008 - 2:43 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Bigb23....
....thanks for the picture. I remember those silos were as common in the Midwest as "See Seven States From Rock City" barns in the mid south.....
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Bob
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Username: Bob

Post Number: 1668
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Saturday, February 09, 2008 - 2:51 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I remember that old barn well (I grew up in the Lansing area). It is on Grand River Ave. between Eagle and Portland.
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Goldensunshine
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Username: Goldensunshine

Post Number: 68
Registered: 11-2005
Posted on Monday, February 11, 2008 - 9:04 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

My mother-in-law just sent my husband and I two huge boxes of Better Maid products, and two twelve packs of Faygo (Redpop & Peach) all the way over to Seattle - we were TOO geeked
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Alley
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Username: Alley

Post Number: 11
Registered: 02-2008
Posted on Monday, February 11, 2008 - 2:27 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I heard you could or can still buy bags of 'all burnt' chips?
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Livernoisyard
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Username: Livernoisyard

Post Number: 5119
Registered: 10-2004
Posted on Monday, February 11, 2008 - 2:35 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

It seems that there's always a few burnt chips in every BM bag. Are the burnt chips really burnt?
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Swtlorrain66
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Username: Swtlorrain66

Post Number: 8
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Sunday, March 09, 2008 - 8:55 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Yup, you're right! I hate that taste too..lol.
WOW..I didn't even know they where gone!
No wonder I don't see them on the shelves anymore! There was this guy who lived on my
grandpas' street. He drove the BM delivery truck. I went to school w/ his daughter.
(my grandparents lived in a expensive, housing neighborhood) Her dad had to fight them about keeping his truck in the driveway.
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Hornist9
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Username: Hornist9

Post Number: 95
Registered: 05-2005
Posted on Friday, March 21, 2008 - 1:03 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Has anyone tried the Better Made Tortilla Chips? I was visiting fellow forum member Hornwrecker on a Saturday night, and he brought down some of his homemade salsa, some Better Made Tortilla chips and some cold Sam Adams (supplied by me). We proceeded to watch the Nascar race and have a good time.

If you like Tortilla chips, try the Better Made.
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Bulletmagnet
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Username: Bulletmagnet

Post Number: 1079
Registered: 01-2007
Posted on Friday, March 21, 2008 - 4:57 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I always liked their chips, and that catchy song in their TV commercial "...That's what Better Made Potato Chips are: Mmm, Mmm, Good..." Ive got the memory of a main frame computer, I do. Now if you will excuse me, I need to go change my diaper.
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Eastburn
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Username: Eastburn

Post Number: 9
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Friday, March 21, 2008 - 9:28 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

My Grandfather lent Cross Moceri, one of the founders of Better Made,$20 "to buy potatoes" when they started out. Grandpa Joe always called Cross "Mr. Potato Chip" Cross would stop by his house every couple of weeks with several bags of chips. Guess that's how he paid off the debt.
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Dxdy
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Username: Dxdy

Post Number: 4
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Monday, March 24, 2008 - 7:07 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

"Does anyone remember Krun-chee? They used to have those 'Do not eat' packs in the bag. I think they were made by the same people who made Velvet Peanut Butter."

I grew up in the shadow of the Krunchee/Velvet plant on Livernois just north of Davison. When the wind was just right, it smelled like heaven.
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Jokerman
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Username: Jokerman

Post Number: 136
Registered: 07-2005
Posted on Wednesday, March 26, 2008 - 4:49 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I found Better Made chips for sale here in San Diego, CA. I wrote about it on another thread. They have them at the IGA on the corner of Jamacha and Cardiff near Spring Valley. I was amazed and pleasantly surprised to find them
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Xd_brklyn
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Username: Xd_brklyn

Post Number: 372
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Wednesday, March 26, 2008 - 5:24 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Still looking for them here in NYC. Was just in town this past weekend and seeing those grocery shelves filled with a colorful variety of Better Made chips always makes for a welcoming sight. Like the copy on the chip bag too--where they personally thank Michiganders for purchasing their products--nice.
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Abraham
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Username: Abraham

Post Number: 21
Registered: 06-2005
Posted on Wednesday, March 26, 2008 - 6:19 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Wait a minute. Are you saying Better Made stopped making chips? This would kill me. I have to have my red hots at least a couple times a month. This would be huge news to me. Whats the story? I'm hitting the store right now to get as many red hot bags as possible. As a side note I think Uncle Rays chips totally suck. Wont even eat them in a bind. Everyone I have ever asked or talked to agreed with me. I get the feeling not to many people are into Uncle Ray chips. Realy though, what is the story on Better Made?
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Living_in_the_d
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Username: Living_in_the_d

Post Number: 144
Registered: 01-2008
Posted on Wednesday, March 26, 2008 - 6:55 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Yeah, I think I will also take a "field trip", to the gratiot store to stock up on a bag of each, especially the burnt ones.
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Nickstone
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Username: Nickstone

Post Number: 41
Registered: 02-2006
Posted on Wednesday, March 26, 2008 - 7:56 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Are the BM tortilla chips made here? They are, without question, the most crispy and tasty tortilla chips around... I always buy them...

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